Netflix has picked up Jennifer Aniston’s Dumplin’, a comedic drama based on the best-selling YA novel by Julie Murphy. The story centers on the title character, the plus-size teenage daughter of Aniston’s former beauty queen, who stirs things up in her small Texas town when she signs up for her mom’s pageant as a protest.
Patti Cake$ actress Danielle Macdonald stars as the pot-stirring Dumplin’, together with co-stars Odeya Rush (Goosebumps), Dove Cameron (Descendants), Harold Perrineau (Lost), Bex Taylor-Klaus (Scream: The TV Series) and Ginger Minj. Anne Fletcher (The Proposal) directed the film from Kristin Hahn’s script. Music will figure heavily in the film, with a soundtrack featuring Dolly Parton, Sia, Miranda Lambert, Mavis Staples and many others.
THR reports that Netflix has picked up the music-filled Dumplin’ with an eye toward both a streaming release in the U.S. plus some international territories, as well as a limited theatrical release. To promote the movie’s soundtrack, a reworking of the Dolly Parton song “Here I Am” will come out on September 14th. Parton and Linda Perry also wrote six new original songs for the soundtrack.
In addition to Dumplin’, Aniston is also set to appear in the Netflix original Murder Mystery, which re-teams the actress with Adam Sandler. Aniston is also reportedly developing a series together with Reese Witherspoon for Netflix’s rival Apple TV. Aniston’s Dumplin’ co-star Macdonald earned raves for her performance in 2017’s Patti Cake$, in which she played an aspiring New Jersey rap artist. Next year Macdonald will star in the CBS limited series Unbelievable alongside Toni Collette and Merritt Wever.
The last few months of 2018 will be busy for Netflix, who plan to give both streaming and theatrical releases to several movies that could find themselves in Oscar contention. Alfonso Cuarón’s Venice Film Festival Golden Lion winner Roma heads up the list of potential Netflix Oscar plays, along with Paul Greengrass’s 22 July and the Coen Brothers’ Ballad of Buster Scruggs (which was originally intended as a limited series before being edited into a single anthology-style film). It remains to be seen if Dumplin’ will itself get any awards buzz, but Macdonald is definitely someone to watch around Oscar time after her acclaimed work in Patti Cake$. Aniston herself is seeking her first career Oscar nomination after scoring a Golden Globes nod for her performance in Cake.
Dumplin’ is set for release sometime later in 2018.